This is a section from a research paper I have been working on for a Biological Psychology class. My goal is to help assist in improving the common methods used in Western medicine for treating individuals with various disorders.
Vital energy is the core foundation of the human organism. What keeps the heart beating, the mind thinking, reproductive organs reproducing, and billions of neurons communicating? Energy powers the world and every living thing in it. Energy is everything, without it, there would be no life, no movement, all cycles would cease. Emotional and physical health are a projection of the energetic system. Energetic can also be referred to as spiritual, as it goes beyond physical perception. Mind, body, and spirit are all interrelated. To heal mood disorders at their very root, it is necessary to heal energetically. Dr. Katharina Johnson (n.d.) states the following, “From an energetic perspective, anxiety is a disorganization of the vital energy that runs in your body” (para. 5). A synthesis of modern science and ancient wisdom exposes larger truths within the realms of matter and psyche. This paper will now explore the connectedness of the nervous, circulatory, and endocrine systems with the chakras and how these systems affect the way we think, feel, and act.
The brain and nervous system are the body’s electrical wiring. Where does the supply of energy that powers this system come from? It can’t be food, mass amounts of energy are required for digestion to take place and food can’t bring a being back to life. Traditional Chinese medicine is based upon the knowledge that meridians, channels of energy, flow throughout the body; chakras are the centers of this energy. Chakras are vortices that penetrate the body and the body’s aura, they are believed to play a vital role in physical, mental, and emotional health. Kirlian photography captures the energetic light of the body also known as the electromagnetic field of the human body or aura. The chakras are made visible to the physical eyes in these pictures. Theories suggest that the aura might actually be a form of light that emanates at frequencies beyond the normal range of vision. Like a rainbow, the chakras coincide with the visible light spectrum. Clairvoyants believe health disturbances often manifest in the aura, and thus in the chakras, months and sometimes years before they manifest in the physical body. A practitioner of Aiijii Healing, Karin Nemri (2004) writes, “chakras are the energy vortexes that give life to your energetic body, which is another name for your spiritual body, the part of you that has eternal life” (p.37). Interestingly, science is still searching to understand the life span of light. Photons live for at least billions of years. The following is a description of the chakras from Laura Berman, Ph.D. (2016).
“They are aspects of consciousness, and they interact with the physical and energetic body through two major vehicles, the endocrine system, and the nervous system. Each of the seven chakras is associated with one of the nine endocrine glands, and also with a particular group of nerves, called a plexus, making them important elements in healing” (para. 8).
There are seven main energy centers that run along the spinal cord. The Central Nervous System, the first to form, and which we cannot live without, is the main interstate running through the chakras. With regards to diagrams, it is a roadmap to the locations of these spiritual centers. Afferent and efferent nerves serve as highways of communication between the CNS and the rest of the bodily system. Western science has now noticed the many hollow tubes surrounding the axon of a neuron. These microtubules have been thought of as a “scaffolding to support the nerve fiber, now a second look is being taken by some at their possibility of being the architecture of our consciousness. Their size appears to be perfectly designed to transmit photos in the UV range” (Eden, 2016, para. 59).
The endocrine glands of the human body correspond with the chakras (please refer to Appendix A, B, C, and D). The first, the root, relates to basic needs and to a person’s relationship with the physical world and their physical identity. Reproductive organs, sexual energy, and the kidneys are connected to the sacral (there are slight interchanges among these depending upon the source used due to the intimate connection within all of these systems). At the navel is the solar plexus. The adrenal glands, pancreas, digestive and metabolic systems are interlinked with the solar plexus. Within the heart center is the thymus gland. Respiratory and cardiovascular systems are dependent upon the heart chakra. The state of the nervous system is influenced by the heart and all of these systems of communication, energetic and physical. The thyroid gland and the throat chakra reside in the same location. Once we arrive at the top of the CNS, we reach the brow and crown chakras and they embody the pineal gland, pituitary gland, hypothalamus, biological cycles, and eyes. This is only a brief representation attempting to touch the surface of the chakras’ roles in governing systems of the physical body. When the heart feels pain, when the stomach experiences “butterflies” and nervousness, or the throat feels constricted and unable to speak, this is a result of the energy of the chakras. Love flowing through the heart, sexual energy, all sexual experience, “gut instincts”, the ability to communicate, thought processes, and feeling connected to another are also all because of the chakras. Additionally, the pathways of circulation suggest the influence of these centers as well. Endocrine glands secrete hormones into the bloodstream. The bloodstream then circulates these hormones throughout. These chemical signals affect mood, growth and development, metabolism, reproduction, and the body’s responses to stimuli. Medications that block and alter moods, emotions, and physical sensations do not offer healing; they only veil the discomfort from the waking awareness. Emotions are energy, Nemri (2004) also states, “All physical disease manifests from long-term, unresolved emotional issues, the energy of which gets stuck in one or more of these energy vortexes” (p. 38). Health and happiness depend upon the energetic system. It is time for the west to more widely recognize the chakra system. The health of our civilization depends upon it.
The American Psychological Association’s website (www.apa.org) offers an article about medication and mental health called, Inappropriate prescribing, written by Brendan L. Smith (2012). Smith brings to light, “The use of psychotropic drugs by adult Americans increased 22% from 2001 to 2010, with one in five adults now taking at least one psychotropic medication, according to the industry data” (p.36). Are pharmaceuticals an answer to improving mental health, or health at all? Dr. Some, a West African Shaman, first came to the United States for graduate study in 1980. He was surprised and shocked by his first visit to a mental hospital here in the states. The culture he originates from works with mental illness in a very different way. The Dagara people believe that mental illness is often the birth of a healer. “In the West, it is the overload of the culture they’re in that is just wrecking them,” stated Dr. Some (Gaddis, 2010, para. 12). “The frenetic pace, the bombardment of the senses, and the violent energy that characterize western culture can overwhelm sensitive people,” continued Dr. Some. Through the eyes of the shaman, mental illness is a result of blocked energies and their approach is to align these energies. Thus, freeing the blockages causing the illness.
To test if his villages’ beliefs were universal, Dr. Some brought an eighteen-year-old American named Alex back to his village in Africa. Alex had experienced a psychotic break at the age of fourteen and suffered from severe depression, hallucinations, and suicidal thoughts. He was living in a mental hospital and his parents had tried everything they could, they no longer knew what to do. Dr. Some reported that after “eight months there Alex had become quite normal” (para. 20). Alex spent four years living in the village and assisting healers before he went on to attend graduate school in psychology at Harvard (para. 23). The shamanic approach worked for Alex when Western medicine and hospitals provided no hope. Ancient cultures counted on spiritual healers to keep their tribes mentally and physically healthy. Science and Spirituality have infinite wisdom to offer one another. Humanity encompasses much more than we are led to believe.
Many methods of healing have been discovered throughout human history. Research is now more readily available to all. A variety of fields continue to bring more knowledge to the forefront. It is important to address the many layers that compose the human being. Like a puzzle, the more pieces we put together, the better we can see the whole picture.
Here is the appendix that is attached to the paper.